Purpose of Monitoring


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Purpose of Program Monitoring

State Service Commissions and National Programs face many challenges in administering AmeriCorps programs. Limited staff capacity, as well as unusual program models, can make monitoring and management particularly difficult. As stewards of public funding, the SERVE ILLINOIS COMMISSION needs to ensure that the programs and sites they fund are aware of their contractual requirements and are in compliance with all of the rules, regulations, and provisions governing AmeriCorps funds. To accomplish this, your Serve Illinois Commission Program Officer must create adequate systems for monitoring program/sites that are fully implemented and available in writing.

Components of a Monitoring Strategy

An adequate monitoring strategy features an array of oversight of program/sites, including:

  • Document Review
  • Compliance Reviews
  • Program Quality and Performance Reviews
  • Special Audits or Surveys
  • One-on-one technical assistance to resolve any issues

General

The Serve Illinois Commission conducts site visits to programs for two purposes:

  1. To provide assistance on program development and implementation issues; and
  2. To ensure compliance with AmeriCorps rules and regulations.

Programs in their first three years of funding typically require more assistance than programs that have been operating for four or more years. The majority of staff time and energy will be spent visiting and providing assistance to new programs.

Programs not scheduled for a visit may request assistance or a site visit to focus on specific program issues at any time. Staff will accommodate these requests as efficiently as possible.

In addition, all programs with one or more high-risk factors, determined by the Risk Assessment Tool, will receive additional visits from Serve Illinois Commission Program Officers.

This policy will help to ensure high quality AmeriCorps programs are implemented while maximizing staff time and meeting the recommendations of the Inspector General in regards to program monitoring.

Preparations

To prepare properly for a site visit, program staff should:

  • Review the Monitoring Tool provided by your Program Officer and be prepared to present any requested documentation.
  • Schedule the visit with your Program Officer at a time when the appropriate people will be available for meetings.
  • Verify that member time sheets are entered and up to date two weeks prior to the meeting.

Procedure

All visits will be scheduled in advance. Your Program Officer will contact you to schedule your monitoring visit(s).

Written feedback will be provided to programs after each visit. Copies of all completed forms and correspondence will be kept in program monitoring files.